Beijing Beat blog with Mark Godfrey

Beijing Beat

CD Piracy Worse in China Or Russia?

Sep 29

Written by:
9/29/2008 7:31 AM  RssIcon

Counterfeiters in the East block use a different ploy to their Chinese counterparts but the problem seems more entrenched here

Sure, most of the audiovisual product in even the smallest Chinese city is 80% bootlegged. But leaving the numbers aside - 1.3 billion people will buy more of the stuff - it appears that worse offenders in the whole CD piracy problem may be the Russians. I remember a couple of years ago travelling through central Asia and finding dozens of traders in the capital city department store (invariably called Zum) selling collections of MP3s on CD, the product having been shipped in from Russia. Well they're still at it. Zum in Odessa, the black sea port in southern Ukraine where I found myself this week, sells collections of big name artists' albums for about EUR3.50 each. That's 11 albums - most of Pink Floyd's back catalogue on the "Pink Floyd Diamond Collection' CD I examined. Manufactured in Russia, according to the salesgirl, each collection is packaged in generic, rather tacky artwork. Chinese counterfeiters tend to reproduce single albums - including copying the packaging to exacting detail - and sell each for about EUR1.60 each. 11 albums would cost considerably more the Chinese way. It's hard to know who'd doing more harm but on numbers the Russians are selling more knocked-off music cheaper.  

 

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